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>> thanks for joining us, i'm jamie colby, see you back here at 7. kelly: and merry christmas. jamie: oh, kelly, thank you so much. god bless. kelly: you're irresistible. jamie: "america live" is up next. jon: a fox news alert out of
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upstate new york where a gunman has opened fire with four firefighters battling an intense inferno, and two of those firefighters are now dead. heather: i'm heather childers, we are in for megyn kelly. now, the firefighters shot while responding to a fire in weber the, new york. the police chief says two of them were killed at the scene. the other two are being treated at a hospital. gregg: our david lee miller is following this story live from our new york studios. >> reporter: here's the timeline of what happened this morning. it was about 5:35 when they received a call there was a house fire. firemen from the west webster fire department, four in total. the first two of those firemen were shot dead at the scene, two others were seriously hurt. later an off-duty police officer from the nearby town of greece, new york, drove by. the gunfire hit his car. he was apparently injured by the
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shrapnel. now, as for the shooter, authorities say that he apparently was killed by a gunshot, there was some type after a shootout. police arrived, their fired at the shooter. not clear to what extent, if any, he fired back at the police officers, but we do know that he is now dead. not clear if it was self-inflicted. the police chief for webster new york, gerald pickering, held a news conference a few hours ago x he described what amounted to nothing less than an ambush. listen. >> at this time, you know, it's still under investigation, but we, you know, we have different leads that we're chasing down. it does appear that it was a trap that was set for responding, you know, first responders. but causative reasons we don't have at time. >> reporter: the police chief said that the shooter's body was found nearby. he also said that it was not clear at this time what type of a weapon it was, whether it was an assault rifle. also to be mentioned because of
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the shooting that took place, the fire that started in one home then spread to a number of other homes, at least four homes were seriously damaged or destroyed here. at this hour the investigation continues, still not clear, gregg, on the minds of many this christmas eve the motive, why the gunman opened fire on the local firefighters. gregg? gregg: what a sad and inexplicable event on christmas eve. david lee mill e we'll check back with you. thank you. >> well, to another fox news alert with a better ending, a u.s. marine just making it home in time for christmas. he's been hospitalized in louisiana shortly after being released from one of mexico's most dangerous prisons. john hammer, he was jailed for months when he tried to cross the border with an antique shotgun his family says is an heirloom. here's how his mother described
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her first conversation with him. >> reporter: what did you say to him in. >> are you okay, you know? he was like, yeah, i'm sick, but i'm okay. i'm okay and i'm tired. and, you know, the first thing he said to me, actually, is i need a shower. that was his first comment. so -- but my husband said he took, like, a four-hour shower the first night, so i think he's doing okay. [laughter] heather: our steve harrigan is live from palmetto bay where the marine has just arrived and, steve, no doubt a big celebration. >> reporter: heather, a real subdued atmosphere here right now. that four-month ordeal just ended 90 minutes ago. that's when the father, with john hammer, just raced up this driveway. there are some concerns about john hammer's physical condition. they did stop off at an emergency room enroute home from that mexico/texas border. he's suffering from dehydration, his father says he's having trouble standing up, but this will be the greatest christmas
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the family's ever had. >> reporter: must be a really tough time for you right now. tell us what you're feeling. >> no, this is great right now. i'm glad to be talking to you about that it's over with. because it's really over with. >> reporter: it's still really sinking in to the family this is finally over with. initially, they had a low-key approach to try and win his release. after that failed, though, they went more and more public, appearing on television and also pressing their own elected representative, especially their congresswoman to really push hard against the mexican government for an early release. their goal was to get him home by christmas, and they've achieved that goal. heather, back to you. heather: we are glad they're going to spend the holiday together. thank you very much. and a little background, by the way, on john hammer's arrest. it was august 13. he was enroute to costa rica with a friend when he was detained by mexican customs who claimed that he had an incorrect permit for an antique rifle that he had in the his possession.
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well, the friends that he was traveling were -- with were also detained but released shortly after. four months later on december 17th, the first photo was anonymously e-mailed to his father. two days ago hammer was released when a mexican judge ruled in the his favor, and he was then driven across the border into texas. that same night his father anxiously waited for him. john hammer spent a total of 132 days behind bars. gregg? ♪ gregg: an american contractor working in afghanistan has died in what could be the latest insider attack against americans in that country. we're being told the man was shot and killed by a woman dressed in an afghan police uniform as he was walking out of the police headquarters in kabul. police arrested her a short time later, and right now investigators are trying to figure out if the shooter was,
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indeed, an afghan police officer. >> today at the kabul police headquarters a civilian member of isaf, a police menton was shot -- mentor was shot and died. her affiliation with the police is not known at this point in time. obviously, this is a very sad occasion, and our thoughts and prayers are with the family and loved ones. gregg: more than 60 international lies including troops and civilians have been killed by of afghan forces in so-called insider attacks this year alone. heather: well, we are seeing new video this hour showing the horrific aftermath of an air strike at a wake ri near -- bakery near the central syrian city of hama. more than 60 people killed in the attack yesterday. dozens others were trapped in the rubble. witnesses could be heard screaming out in anguish
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including one man who was calling out for everyone to, quote, come and have a look at the dead bodies and adding that they were, quote, just looking for bread. meantime, an international peace envoy for syria who just wrapped up fresh talks with president bashar assad said that the two had discussed taking, quote, many steps to help end the violence. ♪ gregg: back in washington, d.c., anxiety is rising over a plan to avert spending cuts and big tax hikes by january 1. the growing number of lawmakers say they are deeply skeptical that a deal can be reached in the next seven days, and we're beginning to hear new reports suggesting the president may have a smaller deal in mind, one that will keep tax rates where they are and, again, put off the issue of spending cuts. chris stirewalt, fox news digital politics editor, host of "power play" on foxnews.com, chris, good to see you. i was reading your recent
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column, i want to put a portion of it up on the screen, and i'll quote you: gregg: explain what you mean. >> a cheerful christmas thought, gregg. [laughter] merry, merry. no, when we look back at 2012, if you take a minute and look back at the arc of this year in politics, what you saw was the smallest -- it was the most expensive, but it was the smallest presidential election maybe if history. we didn't talk about anything. the president did talk about higher tax rates, but mostly it was as a way to talk about mitt romney's taxes himself. and we didn't talk about much in this except for mitt romney's character and his bank account and those things. it was a sort of the seinfeld election, the election about nothing. and e president won anyway. he returned to washington, and what we have now is an atmosphere here where people
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can't think about big stuff, they can't even conceive of the idea of doing big things. gregg: right. >> and it shouldn't be surprising to us now that as we get down to the end and we get to the cliff itself that what everybody's talking about is shrinking the field and just doing something desperate just to patch to get by into the new year. gregg: speaking of small and cynical, let me carry that forward -- [laughter] with the remarks of senator john barrasso who yesterday on fox news sunday said he thinks the president is eager to go over the cliff because he senses victory. the president senses victory at the bottom of the cliff. now, that's a pretty cynical point of view, but i wonder if it's realistic? what do you think? >> well, look, there's no -- we know this on its face, that the president is in a much better position than the republicans are on the other side of the cliff since everyone's taxes will have gone up, and the republicans will be negotiating to try to get any tax cuts that they can, and the president can call himself the tax-cuttingest
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democrat in the history of the republic. and the bush tax rates will be replaced by the obama tax rates. so he knows he's in a better position than they are. the question is as the clock ticks down and markets become anxious and capital becomes scarce and people are worried about what's going to happen out there, that the president has to think as much as he'd be better off then -- and, certainly, senator barrasso makes a good point about that -- the president's going to have some gut-check moments while he's out on the golf course and looking at the blue pacific, he's going to have to think can his second-term presidency really begin in the midst of a recession, and is he going to be okay with that? gregg: all right, so the clock is ticking, but there's another clock we're keeping a close eye on. i mean, we're talking about the debt clock. look at that, $16.3 trillion and growing second by second. and the president instead of focusing on cuts, he actually
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demanded even more spending, new stimulus, additional spending. maybe he doesn't think that $16 trillion is a real problem even though you talk to any economists, chris, and they're going to tell you that that has a depressive effect on economic growth and ruins the credit markets that are so vital for ongoing businesses. >> and not just that, gregg, but he also asks basically for the debt ceiling to be abolished as we know it, as it's constituted, as it was constituted from the beginning of this country that congress would authorize more borrowing. he said, no, no, no, i want you to pass a law that says i get more borrowing power whenever i want it, but you can stop me if you become very concerned. this was not a proposal given the size of the debt that you're talking about, a proposal that included an abolishment of the debt ceiling and a proposal for few borrowing for more stimulus spending was not one that was
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designed to entice republicans or show magnanimity after a win for the president. it looks like it was, and so far it's working this way, designed to enage and keep -- enrage and keep the republicans from getting a deal done. and you see john boehner's frustration. the president has never made it easier or maybe even b possible for the president -- for boehner or to get the job done. gregg: all right. chris stirewalt, thanks very much. >> merry christmas. gregg: merry christmas. heather: well, coming up, even before the president takes the oath of office for a second time, a new poll out just today suggests americans are increasingly worried about what's ahead for this cot the hd the political debates. gregg: and mother nature not making it easy for millions of folks trying to rush home for the holidays. we are live from the world's busiest airport. heather: plus, a new battle over the president's health care law as we learn more about a doctor shortage and the impact that it could have on you and your
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health services. we'll show you one suggestion for dealing with the shortage and why it is already creating controversy. >> but we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it away from the fog of the controversy. when you have diabetes... your doctor will say get smart about your weight. that's why there's glucerna hunger smart shakes. they have carb steady, with carbs that digest slowly to help minimize blood sugar spikes. [ male announcer ] glucerna hunger smart. a smart way to help manage hunger and diabetes.
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gregg: a small town in alabama is today getting national attention for the steps it's taking to secure the schools there in altoona, alabama, the police department making sure at least one of its four officers is at the elementary school full-time on school days.
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town officials and residents seem to be all onboard with that decision. the new commitment will cost a big chunk of the chief's budget, but he is not willing to take any chances with the safety of the children. heather: we are seeing more attention focused recently on a coming doctor shortage and what that means for president obama's health care act. today new questions about whether many of the medical is thes that have been traditionally -- that have been traditionally provided by trained physicians could be administered by nurse practitioners and pharmacists. well, "the new york times"es floated this idea in an editorial last week, so we wanted to ask dr. mitchell brooks, a former family practitioner to join us with his insight and his take on this. thank you for joining us. >> you're welcome. heather: so is this a good idea with the looming doctor shortage
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quickly approaching, um, should we be using other health care workers to fill that space instead of doctors? >> in the united states, the way and manner in which family medicine is practiced, yes. there's absolutely no reason why a nurse practitioner or a physician's assistant dually licensed and dually trained can't perform the overwhelming majority of the functions of a family there. heather: so when should we use a family doctor? what should we with aware -- be aware of when faced with that choice? >> well, i hi the nurse practitioner or thing if's assistant is trained well enough to foe at what point in time to go to the family doctor our to go to internist or other specialist that's necessary to treat the illnesses. the family doctor basically in this particular scenario acts as
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an administrator. the nurse practitioner or the physician's assistant needs to have position supervision. but for most things that we see and for most of the things that we routinely spend money on, it really isn't necessary for a medical doctor to see. and it calls into question one of the things about which the times piece wrote, and that is the relevance of family medicine as a specialty today, particularly in the age of obamacare. heather: and what about that? what about the relevancy of it today? >> well, i think finish i'm going to go out on a limb here, but as family medicine is practiced in the united states, the nurse practitioner can do what the family doctor does. the idea of coordinating all the information and disseminating the information properly can also be done by an internist. the internist has an extra year of training than the family doctor does, and basically is a
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specialty in internal medicine. generalized internal medicine. and it requires four years of training. the family physician requires only three. and given the legal system we have, most of the time family physicians when they're in doubt will refer someone to a specialist. now, in canada the situation is very different, and it makes sense to have the family physician as the gateway into the health care system. heather: all right. i are to say this, though, because people listening at home to make the patients feel better, just to make us feel better, we want to see the doctor. we want the doctor's opinion. so are we in danger of that not being a possibility down the road if the patient wants to see the doctor instead of the nurse practitioner? >> most assuredly. there's going to be a huge shortage of physicians. the estimation for the number of family primary care physicians, family doctors is 30,000 by 2015. when you include all primary
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care doctors, the number goes to approximately 60,000 and doubles by 2025. so so we're going to have to use physician extenders if we're going to successfully deal with everyday problems. heather: a physician extender? i'm sorry, what is that? >> a physician extender would be a nurse practitioner -- heather: okay. >> -- a physician's assistant. most people use them today or even a surgeon. heather: so given that -- >> it's not an uncommon practice. heather: so given the outlook you just spelled out for us, what does that say about the future of health care in the united states? >> well, it says that we're going to have to wait to see a doctor much longer, it says that if we want to see a specialist, it's going to be very difficult, and it says that the lines are going to be longer. and while you have insurance that might be nice, but your ability to see the doctor given
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the numbers and the arithmetic is going to specifically be decreased. the affordable care act only provides enough funding for the actual education of 1700 family doctors. we're going to need 0,000 primary -- 40,000 primary care physicians. heather: need far more. >> right. heather: thank you so much, dr. brooks. >> merry christmas to you and everybody there. heather: merry christmas to you too. gregg: speaking of which, christmas celebrations in the holy land in full swing right now. we've got a live report from bethlehem. look at the pretty scene there, thousands of pilgrims preparing to mark birth of jesus christ. heather: plus, the wildest video of the day involving a dad at the controls of a helicopter and the son who was watching when it went down. treatment as plosec otc. now with a fancy coating that gives you a burst of wildberry flavor. now why make a flavored heartburn pill? because this is america. and we don't just make things you want,
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♪ heather: welcome back. a helicopter pilot in minnesota walks away from a horrific crash, happened right in his own backyard. take a look. this is all that's left of the small helicopter the man, well, he was of trying to land it near his home when it suddenly spun out of control, slamming into the ground and then catching on fire. amazingly, the pilot walked away with minor burns to his arm and some singed facial hair.
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his son watched the whole scene unfold. >> sitting there watching him fully landed and then seeing it start to rotate, and e knows what to do. he was trying to control it. i actually saw the door of the helicopter fly open and it started to rotate, and that's when it spun around in the -- and the back end of the helicopter hit the trailer. i ran out with the fire extinguisher, we got him out, got his jacket off that was burn, and like i said, he's just fine, but my fire extinguisher was no match for, you know, 20 gallons of fuel, and i just thank god that he's here, and we're going to have a good christmas. heather: lucky, lucky. the faa and the ntsb are investigating the incident. greg greg it's going to be a bittersweet christmas in parts of the holy land payoff recent fighting between -- because of recent fighting between hamas and the israeli defense forces, but the town of bethlehem is looking to make the season bright. officials there say every hotel
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is booked up as christians from all over the world flock to the town where jesus was born. leland visit earth is there. he joins us live from bethlehem. leland? >> reporter: gregg, merry christmas eve from where it all began. we're just a couple of hours away now from midnight mass when the birth of christ is proclaimed by the latin patriarch. i want you to look behind me at manger square. you can see the place is packed, rocking a little bit earlier with christmas carols. they've got a big christmas tree lit up, and these celebrations began this morning. this is the palestinian boy scouts marching in to mark the beginning of the christmas celebrations here at bethlehem. this is the original star road all the way from jerusalem here to manger's square. hundreds of boy scouts lead the procession and then, of course, the latin patriarch. and if you turn around, you get a sense of the festivities here. a huge christmas tree, and then you're looking right at the church and the nativity where
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the latin patriarch will go in to declare the start of christmas. does christmas feel different if. >> of course. you feel like this is where it started, this is where it's from. >> reporter: less than a decade, manger's square was deserted at christmas time, it simply wasn't safe to be here. but now as security has increased inside the west bank, it has become a major tourist draw bringing millions of dollars here to the palestinians and, of course, also to bethlehem. they pull out all the stops. you've got a big nativity scene, huge christmas tree, the square lights up at night, and they are trying to entertain the thousands of pilgrims who come here during the christmas season to experience the very holiest of places during the most special of times. >> i feel like the bible comes to life, in a sense. like i do feel something, you just feel the magic, the atmosphere of everyone around. >> reporter: now, inside the
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church of the nativity right now they are getting ready for midnight mass. it is an invitation-only event. you've got to apply to a lottery and try to get a ticket. security here is incredibly tight, every five or ten yards right now this is a member of the palestinian security services with an ak-47. we just had the palestinian president come in, and you see a lot of the people down here the square are simply happy to be here, experience the feeling even if they don't get in to see midnight mass, gregg. and it's a very different christmas i can tell you that what people experience back in the states. it's not commercialized, it's not about the gifts, it's more about the spirituality. back to you. gregg: yeah. merry christmas to everybody there. all right, leland vittert, thanks so much, from bethlehem. heather: and christmas is just hours away. i know your girls are excited. gregg: they are. heather: well, millions of people, they are trying to get out of town to spend the holiday with their family, but some folks may want to have rudolph on speed dial. we are live at the nation's
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busiest airport up next. gregg: i'm not sure rudolph can get through that. heather: sure he can. gregg: she came face to face with a killer. a young survivor of a mall shooting has a holiday message for everyone. >> i only saw him for an instance only to see that he was wearing black, a mask and carrying a gun. i didn't even realize that it was a real gun. i thought it was maybe a prank. ] how do you measure happiness? by the armful? by the barrelful? the carful? how about...by the bowlful? campbell's soups give you nutrition, energy, and can help you keep a healthy weight. campbell's. it's amazing what soup can do. constipated? yeah. mm. some laxatives like dulcolax can cause cramps. but phillips' caplets don't. they have magnesium. for effective relief of occasional constipation. thanks. [ phillips' lady ] live the regular life. phillips'.
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♪ heather: it is a race against the clock as millions of americans try to make it home just in time for that christmas dinner. but mother nature, yeah, certainly not cooperating in some areas as a wintry mix of snow, rain and sleet blankets much of the country. travelers at the nation's airports keeping their eyes glued for delays on the arrival and departure boards. elizabeth prann is there as well live at the busiest airport in the world, as far as, atlanta's
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hartfield jackson international airport. how you doing? how's it look out there? >> reporter: oh, hi, heather, good to see you. merry christmas. well, it's quite a busy day today, so the airport is certainly living up to its name. a lot of people experiencing some serious delays today although nothing like last week when we saw the blanket cancellations. it's more very much congested and a lot of people traveling and a lot of delays. this is where people come up, lots of hugs and can kisses, but those blue boards that you're looking at, about 20% of flights coming into hartsfield delayed, about 50% of the flights leaving are also delayed, but we're seeing similar delays in places like omaha, tulsa, san francisco, salt lake city also experiencing some major delays because of those weather systems out west. the national weather service issuing winter storm warnings for states like oklahoma and arkansas as well as the southeast which is bracing for severe weather as well. a lot of travelers or we spoke with this morning said they
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planned very early travel plans in hope os of dodging the later delays we may see later on especially as those storms continue to develop not only in the pacific northwest, but also in the southeast. but conditions are deteriorating here, we're seeing a lot of people saying that they're waiting on the tarmac for up to an hour before their flights take off. that being said, as long as they're home for christmas, a lot of them say they're very, very happy. and one thing i do want to mention, heather, is that we are expecting some serious weather after christmas, so people are already planning for those delays, and they say if you're in that area that's going to get hit, be aware, be prepared. remember that airlines do make exceptions when there are some very serious weather systems. heather? heather: doesn't look too bad behind you right now, at least no fistfights breaking out yet. [laughter] merry christmas, elizabeth. >> reporter: lots of smiles, people are getting home eventually. merry christmas. heather: very good. thank you. gregg?
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gregg: all right, we have some new polls out from "the washington post"/abc news that suggests that americans are increasingly worried about the road ahead for this cup. for this country. 44% of americans say they are fearful about what's ahead in 2013, 53% say they're hopeful, but the assessment about what's in tore for the world -- in store for the world or is even more grim. a record low 40% report being hopeful about the next year, 56% saying they're more fearful. brad blakeman joins us, dick harpootlian, south carolina democratic party chair. merry christmas to both of you, gentlemen. >> merry christmas. gregg: let me start with you, dick. you know, when the president was elected, americans were optimistic, they were hopeful, the numbers were quite high. here we are four years later after an obama presidency, and, you know, the public's expectations are bleaker now, more dire and gloomy. in fact, more so than they've
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been in a decade. which invites the question, was hope and change sort of a clever marketing illusion? >> well, this president's created close to five million new jobs, the economy's ticking up in every area; construction, small businesses are picking up. all of it's moving in the right direction. the folks who have spun doom and gloom, the romney campaign spent a billion dollars spinning doom and gloom, and so with that kind of money behind it, a lot of people bought that message. but a lot of people's lives reflect a much better reality within what the republican campaign -- gregg: yeah, but looking at another recession here. ben bernanke's guy who coined the phrase fiscal cliff. he says if we fall off of it in seven or eight days, that's going to lead to yet another recession. >> well, and that's why, and that's why the president ask speaker boehner and mitch mcconnell and harry reid need to come back and make sure their
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membership -- boehner couldn't deliver the other day -- make sure the membership, and by the way, boehner may have to go with democrats plus a minority of republicans to get the job done. gregg: yeah. >> this is about the welfare of this country, not about the welfare of a political party. gregg: all right. brad, the fiscal cliff is one of the reasons why people are so incredibly gloomy about the future, and, you know, dick's making the point here when speaker john boehner can't even get his own party to follow him and put up a vote on his plan, i mean, aren't republicans equally to blame for the public's profound pessimism? >> well, we have a divided nation, that is for sure. this president has not done his job in leading, and had he done his job in leading especially in the fiscal cliff, he wouldn't be in hawaii now, he'd be in washington making sure that we had a deal -- gregg: has boehner done his job? >> boehner has done a great job in trying to lead republicans to a solution. gregg: seriously?
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>> absolutely. gregg: he can't even get a vote on his own plan, come on. >> here's the problem, gregg, is we have a president who basically says it's his way or the highway, and republicans are saying, no, we will raise revenue, but we won't do it at the expense of spending. our problem is a president who loves to spend money, who's now put down another $6 trillion in debt, and basically wants to save a trillion dollars over ten years when he's spending a trillion dollars of money we don't have a year. gregg: you know what, dick? president obama campaigned on the idea of 800 billion in new revenue, and when he won re-election, he suddenly said i'm going to double it. i'm demanding now $1.6 trillion in new revenue. i mean, how do you negotiate with a guy who keeps changing his proposal? >> well, what's interesting is that speaker boehner would have, his proposal would have generated $800 billion in new
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revenue, and he couldn't get republicans of his own party to go along with it. you've got to pass something to begin a process of the give and take. and -- gregg: dick, you're dodging my question. >> that's democrats' problem, they've got to pass a bill. gregg: he said i want 800 billion in new revenue, and the immediately after the election boehner goes to him and says here it is, and he said, no, no, no, now i want 1.6 trillion. come on, dick. >> well, i mean, i think it's important to understand that this president won a huge victory based on raising taxes on everybody that makes -- gregg: so he gets to double the amount he asked for? >> no, no. i mean, i think it's done with following the plan that he proposed -- gregg: no, no -- >> more importantly, this is a negotiation. boehner can't deliver. when he said, okay, i'm going to give him that $800 billion, the republican congressional congressmen looked like a circular firing squad. i mean, the first guy they shot was john boehner. >> there wasn't enough spending
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to offset the revenue that republicans were willing -- >> there was no spending cuts. >> [inaudible] against yourself. >> there was no spending cuts, brad, that was just a revenue piece. >> that's exactly the problem. republicans are not going to give in on revenue without the democrats having a clear plan -- tbreg. gregg: brad, let me ask you this, when john boehner's plan b explodes like a death star, and a congressman said it's the same 40-50 chung lheads that -- chuckleheads that all year long have screwed up this place. is it the tea partiers who refuse, by the way, to compromise on anything with anybody, or is it john boehner's leadership skills that are lacking? >> i think what's lacking here is a president who refuses to sit down with the leadership -- [laughter] john boehner could deliver votes if the president could deliver on his side.
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you know, we wouldn't be in this predicament if two years ago the president would have accepted his own presidential bipartisan commission, simpson-bowles. if we would have took the tough medicine two years ago that this president had directed, he just didn't like what he was told. why? because they said not only do we have to raise revenues, mr. president, but we also have to have drastic cuts in spending, and we have to tackle entitlements. gregg: the whole point of a president appointing a commission, they come out with their recommendations after spending the better part of two years studying the issues, and then the president just promptly, you know, ignores it, throws it in the dumpster. >> well, because, i mean, he couldn't get enough in the democratic senate to support it. >> he -- you control government. >> john boehner, john boehner deliver a pizza, let alone the republican house -- [laughter] and, you know, what i'm hoping is everybody goes home to hawaii or ohio or wherever you're from, has a merry christmas, everybody goes, and they go to -- i was in a coffee shop this morning
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talking to a republican and a democrat, larry richter, david pascoe, and they both said to me both parties are out of control. we have got to get increased revenue and cut spending. now, hopefully, when they go home and hear that from their constituencies, they're going to come back, say, you know, we've got a duty to get in this done. and, brad, you and i agree, disagree on a lot, but we agree on the fact that they've got to get this done, or our economy is going to go over the cliff. gregg: brad, there's a very good chance that harry reid by the end of the week will get passed in the senate a bill that says we're going to extend the bush tax cuts for everybody making under $250,000, and we'll extend unemployment for two million people whose unemployment checks are going to run out. and then it's going to go to the house. speaker boehner will probably have to put that up for a vote, and won't it pass the house with moderate republicans and all the democrats and then the republicans are going to say, jeez, we should have passed that plan b thing?
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>> i'm not so sure that's going to happen because, again, a deal is only as good as it is for both parties. o our problem is spending, not revenue. we're willing to raise revenue, but not without deep spending cuts, without tackling entitlements and guess what? next quarter what do we face? another crisis of raising the debt ceiling. gregg: is it better to go over the cliff then, brad? >> i think the president believes he's in a much better position the go over the cliff. why? because there's nothing he has to do as a matter of law. all the rates go up, and then he can, he can live to fight another day with a new congress in january. >> okay. >> i happen to believe the president wants us to go over the cliff. gregg: well, that's what barrasso said on fox news sunday yesterday, the senator. dick harpootlian and brad lakeman, merry christmas, gentlemen. >> merry christmas. heather: so would you add toppings or o cut them? gregg: that's the line of the day, john boehner can't deliver a pizza.
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>> well, coming out, time is running out and with the fiscal crisis at a standstill, is there more at risk than our tax rates? monica crowley joins us live with her take and new questions about the president's foreign agenda a for the next four years as iran continues to defy international pressure over their nuclear program. ambassador john bolton is here live. and as we remember our brave men and women this holiday season, there are many here at home trying to cope all year round. we'll hear from a doctor next who's made it her mission to help them. guy
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heather: welcome back. the holiday season, it can be with incredibly tough for our troops returning from war. megyn kelly recently spoke with a doctor who has made it her mission to help them. here's that conversation. megyn: well, a new effort to help u.s. veterans whose combat experiences can make this time of year very difficult for some. one author offering free help now with a new book. it's called "taming the fire within: life after war." dr. ann freund is the author and has devoted her life to working with vets at the va -- this isn't a va-endorsed book, but good for you, and i can say that because my own mom devoted her life to working with vets. why is there a need for a book on post traumatic stress
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disorder, as it's known now, and what are you trying to tell the vets? >> well, i think anybody who's involve inside war is very deeply affected, and nobody goes unscathed. and one of the problems is that the troops and their families now as they're coming home really aren't fully prepared for what to expect as far as some of the natural postcombat reactions which occur which is a little different than post traumatic stress disorder. and i think it's important to make that distinction -- megyn: and they don't want to get that label and be identified as having that, so you can have a postcombat experience that has -- >> yes. megyn: -- some signs that may concern you as a vet, and that doesn't mean you have this ptsd. >> exactly, exactly. and that's what my book does. it really explains in very easy-to-understand language about what combat veterans and their families can really expect and what's natural and normal. megyn: so hard for them, doc, because they -- these are tough guys, you know what i mean? a lot of them brought up in
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military families, and they're raised to be brave and courageous and go and fight for us, and they're over there, you know, in the military in combat, for goodness sake. no one really teaches you how to process that. >> exactly. and that's exactly what's very important for the families to understand as well, because it's really a struggle for all of them when they get back. and i think that we need to reach out and provide the information to them, and that's what this book b is about. megyn: what is the hardest part for them? >> well, i think there's so many things, but, you know, to go from being under that high level of stress and always having to be ready for anything bad to happen, looking for roadside bombs, all of that kind of thing, it's very difficult to come back down from going 100 miles an hour to go back to, you know, 10 miles an hour -- megyn: and when they're back stateside, how does that manifest itself? >> well, a good example would be like a veteran coming back would
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probably be very tense while they're driving, because they're looking for, you know, trash, they're objects by the side of the road that, you know, would have an ied in it overseas, but i think it's important for the family to understand if they're it able when -- it table when they're striving, it probably has something to do with that. megyn: it's an adjustment period that our soldiers are going to go through when they come back home. >> exactly. and can it's so important to fight the stigma so we can kind of get real so people aren't embarrassed or ashamed to talk about this. megyn: are they reluctant to get mental help, therapy, psychiatric help? >> well, i think the stigma has a lot to do with that, yes, because it can suggest that it might be a weaknesses when in reality it's not a weak 'em, it's not that the individual is defective, because after talking to veterans from all areas of combat, the reactions are pretty much the same.
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and it's a natural thing. and that's really my whole point is to try to fight the stigma so we can talk openly and can start opening up the lines of communication. megyn: it's just another way of solving problems, and that's what these guys do. in a way, tear expert at that, so when they come back, it's just another means of readjusting, and it can be done with counseling, it can be done with sport of a family, but your goal is to have not just the vets, but tear families read this book so they all know how to support our returning veterans and make it a smoother, easier, more healthy transition. >> exactly. and knowledge is power. and the more people can educate themselves about what they're dealing with -- megyn: so i, i love that it's free. who writes a free book these days in you're allowing -- how do they get it? >> they can go to wwww.com tributetothetroops and download a copy because i think it's so important that our society really step up and support our combat veterans and their
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families. megyn: good for you for doing this. it's a pleasure to know you, thanks for being here. >> thank you. megyn: all the best. gregg: an important subject. heather: we'll be right back.
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gregg: one indiana man cannot get enough of christmas trees. kevin is his name, he certainly
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has no shortage of holiday cheer. he has been collecting everything and anything tannenbaum for 15 years. he says he caught the collecting bug from his dad. in addition to around 75 decorated trees around husband home -- his home, there are countless decoration offense the walls and windows. that actually beats my wife's collection of christmas stuff. stuff. [laughter] heather: and if you have stuff, if you own things like an mp3 player or your tv breaks, something like that, what would you do with it? many people throw those things away when they break, and they simply go buy a new one. but because of the struggling economy, that mentality is getting a makeover of sorts. dominic di-natale is live in los angeles with more on this. >> reporter: hey there, heather. how often do we throw out the toaster or coffee machine? we're all guilty because it's so easy to buy a new one. because of the economy, some people have started their own
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diy/fix hit centers. everything old is new again. is. >> it's just a group of us that like to get together and just help each other fix our whatever we own. >> reporter: from sewing machines to fans to lawnmowers, if it's broke, they'll try to fix it. repair groups have flourished in europe and are now spreading to the united states. >> i like the idea of using something that has already had a life, already created most of its environmental footprint. >> members of the collectors in brooklyn say they help people save the planet and a buck or two. >> i think the throwaway culture motivates a lot of us to come here and just try to fight it. the economy definitely played a role. >> everything has been set up so the minute the newest gadget comes out, people have to get the new one and throw the old one away, and we don't have to
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live like that, you know? it's expensive, and what are we doing today planet? >> reporter: i think it's pretty great that you're seeing those old skills coming back, a lot of older people introducing younger people to that skill set. it's getting people together, it's saving money and the environment as well. everyone's a winner with this one, heather. heather: a win/win on both sides. thank you so much, dominic. as the nation barrels towards the so-called fiscal cliff, new report that is the president has a back-up plan. we are live in hawaii next on what that might look like. gregg: and mother nature throwing a huge wrench into the holiday travel rush. the latest check on the weather conditions and travel delays next. heather: can one of the survivors of the sandy hook elementary school shooting tragedy speaks out. how the school principal and two other school employees saved her life. >> the three of them were shot, and they yelled back, shooter, stay put. they saved my life and the life of four others who were at that
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meeting.
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gregg: another fox news alert. this new development in the fight over the fiscal crisis as lawmakers head home for the holidays. there are reports president obama is scaling back his hope for a sweeping budget bargain with republicans. welcome to a brand new hour of "america live". i'm gregg jarrett. heather: i'm heather childers. we're in for megyn kelly. the president reportedly looking to strike a smaller deal that would extend tax cuts for the middle class without tackling spending cuts as reports surfaced that the president hasn't spoken with speaker boehner since he expressed his frustration at a news conference on friday. take a listen. >> we passed a bill to stop all the tax hikes on the american people scheduled to take effect january the 1st and we did that on august the 1st. and we proposed plans over and over again that
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democrats used to support but now they won't. heather: chief white house correspondent ed henry is live for us in honolulu. that is where the president ising christmas with his family. ed, what can you tell us? >> reporter: well, heather, great to see you. after speaker boehner had that news conference on friday the president had a brief statement of his own in the briefing room before he left here for hawaii where he did lay out a smaller plan as you suggest. he has been here mostly relaxing with his family. he was at the memorial service for senator daniel inouye yesterday for his burial. but, obviously a fiscal cliff still very much on his mind. that short-term deal he was talking about on friday was basically extending middle class tax cuts, $250,000, or below, even though that has been controversyal. even though republicans have not signed onto that. he wants to extend unemployment benefits for two million americans about to lose them after a week if
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there is no deal. as you noted he wanted to push spending cuts to january which is upsetting republicans like john barrasso. take a listen. >> when i listen to the president i think the president is eager to go over the cliff for political purposes. i think he see as political victory at the bottom of the cliff. he gets tax revenue for new programs. and gets to cut military which democrats calling for years and he gets to blame republicans for it. >> reporter: now democrats insist that is nonsense. they say the president since the election has been working with the republicans trying to figure out some sort of solution to this crisis. they note that they believe is the real problem republicans won't admit the president won the election and his ideas, his approach to taxes it was endorsed by the american people. take a listen to chuck schuler. >> on taxes i know it is hard for republicans but the president ran on that platform, 250. no increase for people below
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but increase for people above. he won. 60% of the voters said they were for it in the exit polls including some republicans. >> reporter: senators, house members likely to becoming back to work within a day or two of christmas. we're hearing it is likely the president will do the same and fly back to washington on air force one at some point later this week, that is very likely. sit down with congressional leaders to figure all this out. it is unclear they will working is out at that point. for the first time senator joe lieberman says he believes we will go off the cliff. that there will not be a deal by end of the year. he predicted senators will work on new year's eve right up until midnight that night trying to get a deal. this thing is going nowhere fast, heather. heather: he is not alone saying that. while it looks nice and sunny and beautiful there in washington when you head back it will be a little storm may. thank you very much. gregg: a little chilly. >> reporter: good to see you. gregg: budget negotiations at a standstill and all the
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last minute drama, is america's reputation at risk? does it even matter? monica crowley, radio talk show host and fox news contributor. joins us live. merry christmas to you. i was reading your column, no way to run a super power is the title of it. you argue that the president wants us to go over the cliff. he wants everyone's taxes to go up including the middle class so he can then expand the role of government. well, that would make all of this just a charade, wouldn't it, monica? and the president not telling the truth when he repeatedly says he intends to protect the middle class from higher taxes? >> shocking, greg, i know. i wrote a book about this first four years of barack obama's first term. every single time fiscal issues come up and every single time he had to deal with republicans it has been the exact same routine where the president promises that he is very interested in deficit reduction and very interested in serious spending cuts.
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none of whichever materialize. but the class warfare rhetoric is always still there. he is always interested in raising taxes to feed his ever-growing and every ravenous beast of the government. here we are again. when i talk about this is no way to run a superpower, what i mean by that, every single time we get to the press miss and every single time our leaders wait until the exact last minute, i mean one thing to wait for it the last minute to buy christmas gifts for tomorrow. i see plenty of people running around new york city trying to buy gifts. another thing for the president and congress to wait until the last minute on fiscal issues that affect every american, gregg and our long-term fiscal health. gregg: are you saying the president is disingenuous and duplicitous which would be novel in politics? >> and certainly in washington, d.c.. all we have to go on is the president's pattern of behavior. over the last four years it has been the same drill every single time. the republicans you would expect they would learn not to be charlie brown racing
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toward the democrats lucy and the football and yet every time they do. the republicans go in good faith and very ernestly to try to negotiate with the president and in this case boehner has put $800 billion of new revenue on the table. he is willing to meet the president halfway on that. yet the president turns around and gregg, says, no you get nothing for that. he was quoted as saying i get that for free and i'm not going to do anything on spending. gregg: "wall street journal" participant taking notes in the room at the same time. look, you say in your column that boehner is inept but if he really is charlie and lucy and the football, then he is gullable too, isn't he? >> i think a the are of republicans are. i think a the are of republicans felt this president, once he won re-election would have his eye on his legacy and want to move closer to the center but that is usually what normal presidencies do. this is not a normal presidency. gregg: right. >> this is a president whose eye on the fundamental
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transformation of the nation. what he means by that is radical wealth redistribution and taking down main pillars of u.s. economy to replace them with redistributive ones. he is not operating in the same way as past presidents have. gregg: maybe this is a president who really doesn't think 16.3 trillion in debt and will soon go up to 20 trillion is a problem? >> right. gregg: you know, -- >> that's right. i agree with you on that. there is no sense of urgency, gregg, from this president at any point throughout his first term i don't think we'll see it in the second term. he doesn't believe 16.3 trillion --. gregg: depriving marketplace of borrowing dollars and kills businesses and economic growth. >> that is exactly right but remember every time he has had a chance to cut spending he has done the exact opposite and has expanded spending. he has taken federal spending, gregg, from 18, 19% of the gdp, which is what it was been under presidents of both parties since the end of world war ii, and ranch committed it up to 25% of the gdp.
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annual federal deficits over a trillion dollars. he will not change his tune. this is about the fundamental transformation of the nation. that is why he needs all tax rates to go up because he needs to get where the real money is which is the middle class. gregg: that debt is fundamental economics. really baffling. >> right. gregg: monica, good to see you. nice column. merry christmas to you. >> merry christmas to you too. gregg: bye-bye. heather: to a fox news alert now. we just got word to expect a news conference anytime now from police in upstate new york after a gunman opened fire at four firefighters who showed up to just do their job, battle a fire that actually may have been ended up being a trap set by the shooter. police in webster, new york, outside of rochester, they say two of those firefighters were killed at scene. another two were treated at a local hospital. we're awaiting for that news conference. we'll have a live report in moments on what we may learn
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from police and plus the 911 calls that we got moments ago from this case. so stay tuned. another news, america's gun control debate meantime continues to grow as the ceo of the nation's largest gun lobby doubles down on the idea of putting armed guards in u.s. schools after connecticut school shooting, saying that it is, saying, to his critics that it is his critics and not his views that are truly out of touch. >> if it is crazy to call for putting police and armed security in our school to protect our children, then call me crazy. i'll tell you what the american people, i think the american people think it's crazy not to do it. heather: and while the in. ra suggests americans would have no problem sending their kids to school staffed with armed guards, one lawmaker says there is no reason that we should ever get to that point. >> here's what he says.
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the way to stop a bad guy with guns is have a good guy with guns. why don't we stop the bad guy from getting the gun in the first place? that is more logical thing to do rather than wait for a shootout in our schools, god forbid. heather: strong opinions on both sides. medically henneberg is live in washington with more details. hi, molly. >> reporter: hi, heather. wayne laperriere, the ceo of the national rifle association calls the newtown, connecticut, school murders, a quote, a horrible tragedy and the n are a dport as voluntary program that would allow schools to bring in retired police, military or secret service agents to provide armed security. he says that will quote, immediately make our children safe. >> every mom and dad will make them feel better when. they drop their kid off at school in january if we have a police officer in that school, a good guy, that if some horrible monster tries to do something they will be there to protect them.
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>> reporter: laperriere says the nra hired former republican congressman asa hutchinson to develop a more in depth security plan for schools. hutchison, a also former deputy director of the department of homeland security, compares this debate to the debate over armed federal air marshals. >> it increased safety of airlines. it is not like it is an armed camp when you go on airlines. it is very discrete use of armed guards that has a presence there to protect america. our children less important to protect than our air transportation? i don't think so. >> reporter: but the reaction on capitol hill has been less than enthusiastic it especially from democrats. california democratic senator dianne feinstein calls it, a quote, delay tactic. others suggested that laperriere's plan might have the opposite effect on lawmakers. >> well i think he is so extreme and so tone deaf that he actually helps the cause of us passing sensible
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gun legislation in the congress. >> we have 10,000 elementary and secondary schools in this country. if you had two officers in each that would cost $25 billion. where is that money going to come from? >> reporter: president obama has put vice president joe biden in charge of a tax force looking at reducing gun violence. the president says he wants a report back next month. heather? heather: molly henneberg live for us in washington. thank you, molly. gregg: we're hearing new concerns our foreign policy will get more challenging over the next several months as violence intensifies in syria. and north korea and iran continue to defy international pressure over their nuclear programs. former u.s. ambassador to the united nations, john bolton will be here in three minutes on what to watch tore. heather: again, new information coming in on this breaking news coming out of the new york. firefighters ambushed and shot responding to a house fire. a live report right after the break. gregg: and with budget negotiations at a standstill
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there are new concerns about what a failed deal could actually do to the rest of the president's agenda. our political panel debates that coming up. >> i don't want taxes to go up. republicans don't want taxes to go up. but we only run the house. democrats continue to run washington [ woman ] ring. ring. progresso. your soups are so awesomely delicious my husband and i can't stop eating 'em! what's...that... on your head? can curlers! tomato basil, potato with bacon... we've got a lot of empty cans. [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. [ sniffs ] i took dayquil but my nose is still runny. [ male announcer ] truth is, dayquil doesn't treat that. really? [ male announcer ] alka-seltzer plus fights your worst cold symptoms, plus it relieves your runny nose. [ breathes deeply ] awesome. [ male announcer ] yes, it is. that's the cold truth!
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fox news alert. we're waiting for a news conference any moment now upstate new york. a gunman has opened fire at four firefighters that came to battle a blaze that may have been a trap set by the shooter. listen to some of the emergency radio calls being placed as crews realized exactly what was happening. >> we're being shot at. multiple firemen done. multiple firemen shot.
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i am shot. i think he is using an assault rifle. we have multiple firemen down. working fire. shot with a firearm. >> understood. what is your 32, copy, multiple firemen down, multiple firemen shot with a working fire. gregg: let's pick up the story with david lee miller live in our new york newsroom. david? >> reporter: gregg, the questions at this hour remain unanswered, who was the shooter and what was his motive? this is what we do know. it was about 5:35 when the west webster firefighters responded to a house fire. there you see the blaze. two of the firefighters shot and killed at the scene. two others seriously wounded. a police officer off-duty from a nearby police department was also wounded, hit by shrapnel. the blaze then spread to other homes. the firefighters unable to contain it. finally police did arrive. there was a shootout and the shooter was killed, not clear at this hour if his
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injuries were self-inflicted. we do expect a news conference is going to take place within the hour. it is expected that we will learn more information about the shooter and what his motive might have been in this christmas eve tragedy. gregg? gregg: all right. david lee miller, we'll go to the news conference when it begins. thanks very much, david. heather: well new concerns that the president will be facing growing foreign policies problems in his new term. iran's nuclear program reportedly speeding along unchecked as reports suggest north korea may be closer than ever to building a missile that could hit the u.s. with parts of the middle east spiraling out of control and major difference ares remaining between the u.s. and both russia and china, our next guest suggests that the president, well he faces a deep challenge in 2013. joining me now former u.n. ambassador to the u.n., john
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bolton, also a fox news contributor. thank you for joining us and merry christmas to you. >> merry christmas. heather: but first of all, before we get to all of that, and i want to go through it piece by piece with you, i want to first start with benghazi. do you see benghazi as being a turning point of sorts in both kpozing the failures of the obama administration and also kpozing the influence or the lack thereof of america globally? >> well it could well be. you look back on turning points at the moment they occur and realize what happened. the administration has not responded to the attacks. he has not brought the people involved in it to justice of any kind. we haven't retaliated. it is over three months when four americans were killed. i think the lack of response, the lack of interest by much of the mainstream media, the lack of debate about it in the presidential campaign certainly indicate an administration that is very
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comfortable without paying attention to events in the middle east in particular, comfortable with the prospect of american decline, and comfortable underplaying the continuing threat of international terrorism. and i find that very disturbing. heather: disturbing when we take a larger look at the big picture and some of the issues that we addressed when i was introducing you. long-term issues. those being, what do you think, the long-term issues of the administration is facing that are most important? >> well, at the strategic level the administration has tried for four years, for example, to press the famous reset button with russia. it gave russia, a new start, arms control treatly, very disadvantageous to the united states. the administration has substantially scaled back our national missile defense program, even, as you mentioned as north korea and iran get closer and closer to deliverable nuclear weapons capabilities. the proliferation threat has grown over the past four
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years. contrary to the administration's narrative the threat of international terrorism has not declined. indeed as we see from the tragedy of benghazi it is metastasizing. yet the president's focus remains almost exclusive on domestic u.s. affairs. and obviously we still have an economy that is not adequately in recovery. but the rest of the world, our adversaries, are not gracious enough for us to get our house in order before they pose challenges. i think that's what's happened already. i think the pace and scope of those challenges will grow in the second term. heather: yeah. immediate challenge, right now, what is happening in egypt which is in the headlines today. the muslim brotherhood taking over there. the also the civil war, unrest going on in syria. >> right. i see these various crises in the middle east and you named two of the most serious but adding what is happening in libya, in yemen and elsewhere, adding continuing threat of iran's nuclear weapons program, it
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support for terrorist groups like hamas and hezbollah, i could see all of these crises spinning together and the entire region growing out of control while the united states acts almost as if it is a bystander. this is unprecedented in recent decades to have such a weak, feckless in fact, u.s. role in the region. heather: do you see any change taking effect? >> well, i don't think so honestly. i don't think, for example the nomination of john kerry to be secretary of state or whomever the nominee for a new secretary of defense turns out to be, i don't see them changing the basic direction of obama's administration policy. i think this course we've been on in the past four years is directly attributable to the president himself. i think that will continue into his second term. in fact i would say, now that he is safely reelected, a lot of the idealogical underpinnings of the president's world view can now play out without at least for him any fear of
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political downside. and that has me even more worried, i must say. heather: thank you very much for joining us with your insight as usual. fascinating. thank you. >> merry christmas. heather: merry christmas. gregg: all right. there is one piece of good news as the busy u.s. shopping season wraps up. made in the usa for the holiday. that's next. ♪ .
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gregg: we're following breaking news story in webster, new york. a blaze broke out this morning. firefighters responded and somebody opened fire on those firefighters. two are dead, two are injured. let's go to a news conference right now. >> the lieutenant governor bob duffy is graciously agreed to join us and say a few words at the end of the press conference. we have major mark kosten of the new york state police. just an update on the fire scene. the fire, the fires are
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under control. seven houses have been totally destroyed at the scene. still an active crime scene. we have yet to get into any of the homes. we don't know if there are any additional victims in those homes. and, when that information comes to light we'll certainly give you updates on that. with regards to the homes, the red cross has asked me to put out the phone number, if you would run it for me please, 241-4472 emergency housing. any other needs. they do assistance for any mental health issue that may come in because of this tragedy. clothing, any type of aid possible. 241-4472. they haven't been table to touch bases with all the residents up at the scene at this time. an update on the two shooting victims that i put
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out earlier. theodore skardeno guard condition. the joe hoffstetter, stable condition. we can report at this time, that the shooter is deceased. he died of self-inflicted gun wounds. his name is william spangler. date of birth, 9/26 of 50. mr. spangler has cite a lengthy criminal history. in 1980 he was arrested by police charged with killing his grandmother. he was convicted in 1981 he served time in new york state prison system until 1998 and was on supervised parole until 2006. i don't believe that we've had any contact with him, criminally in recent past.
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and at this time i'll open up just some questions. anything from the fire side. mr. stankowitz would be like -- >> you said it was trap set. initial car was a car fire. understand they were trapped in an ambush. >> this is still an active investigation but at first blush it appears it was a trap. that the there was a car and a house that were engulfed in flames. probably set by mr. spengler, who laid in wait with armament and then shot the first-responders. >> do you believe there might be other people in -- [inaudible] >> that is certainly very much a possibility. again, you know, these homes were fully engulfed. firefighters are just getting things under control. it will be a while before we can get the fire investigators into the homes
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to check and see. there may be other deaths. gregg: all right. a career criminal, set a trap. apparently igniting a blaze. several homes in the end, seven of them caught fire. firefighters responded. he opened fire on those firefighters. two of them have been killed. two have been wounded. moments ago we got this from the police scanners. listen to the drama as crews on the scene first alerted the dispatchers about what was going on. >> we are being shot at. multiple firemen down. multiple firemen are shot. i am shot. i think he is using an assault rifle. we have multiple firemen down. working fire. >> mult firefighters shot with a firearm. >> understood. 32 copy. multiple firemen down and multiple firemen shot with working fire. gregg: they were just trying to save other lives in the end and they lost their
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heather: welcome back. we're tracking developing news this afternoon as severe winter weather disrupts holiday travel plans for millions across the u.s. a big storm pushing snow from the west into the plains making for hazardous travel conditions. with slick roads and low visibility and there were some serious airport delays earlier. the faa reports conditions are improving though. but some residential backups or residual backups remain especially in spots like atlanta and san francisco. gregg: back to our top story. with budget negotiations at a standstill there is growing concern that congress will not reach a deal on the fiscal crisis before an array of tax hikes and spending cuts take effect january 1st. well, it is a situation that could spell trouble for the rest of the president's agenda. take a listen. >> averting this middle
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class tax hike is not a democratic responsibility or a republican responsibility. with their votes the american people have determined governing is a shared responsibility between both parties. in this congress laws can only pass with support from democrats and republicans and that means nobody gets 100% of what they want. everybody's got to give a little bit. gregg: we have a republican strategist and former aide to president george w. bush. mark hannah, a democratic strategist and a former obama campaign aide. good to see you both. mark, most in washington seem to agree we should not fall off the fiscal cliff but they can't agree how to avoid it. if the president can't get that passed, is there any hope for the rest of his agenda or is it just going to be four more years of bickering and sniping and gridlock and recriminations? >> i don't think you hear any i can aboutering and sniping on the president's part, but, no, to answer
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your question i think there is a lot of hope. season of hope after all. i want to wish you, gregg, a merry christmas and didi and heather. there is lot of hope for the american people. it is fact of the matter we are entrenched in this sort of very conservative obstructionist congress not letting anything get passed. let's be clear in week from now all americans taxes are going up, unless john boehner as speaker of the house of representatives, his party in control of the house right now to support the president's plan make the middle class tax cuts permanent. he is in an awkward position right now. he hasn't been able to do that, he put forward a bill trying to get tax cuts permanent for everybody making under a million dollars. he wasn't able to do that with his own republican party and opposition. he is showing a lot of political impotence right now. i think in order for any progress to be made he needs to rally his troops. gregg: didi, "the wall street journal" reports braced on a participant who
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was there that the president told boehner if he didn't cave in to his, the president's demands on the fiscal cliff, he said he would use his inaugural address and his state of the union speech to tell the country that republicans are to blame. is he great the divider? >> well, i think it is more like he is taking the sleigh off the fiscal cliff with rocket launchers off the back and being bad sanity taflt he is saying you know what? i dare you. like to the victor goes the spoils and taking it too far because it is spoiling our economic future. he did win the election but doesn't mean he gets everything. he should practice what he preaches. he said we all need to give but what is he giving? nothing at all. gregg: i was going to ask you that, mark. you heard from the president everybody has to give a little. based on reporting that we've got the president isn't giving anything, is he? what is he giving? >> given a tremendous amount of what --. gregg: what? >> eggnog.
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>> he is not trying to be cynical. look the president is confronting these negotiations with all the sobriety and seriousness they demand. i think the president has put forward a balanced plan that represents both revenue generation and spending cuts that the republicans haven't even given the time of day to. what the president is doing taking case to american people. a lot of republicans criticized him for doing this, bypassing on some level negotiations directly with them. the fact of the matter the american people are a lot more reasonable than elected representatives. and the -- >> not reasonable to say the republicans look bad and dare them with the inaugural address starting out the new year. gregg: john boehner was very first to offer early concessions right after the election. in fact according to, you know, the people who were there, boehner told the president, and this is a quote, i put 800 billion in tax revenue on the table. mr. president, what do i get for that? to which the president responded, i get nothing.
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i get that for free. come on, mark. president says he wants to negotiate a bipartisan deal and then he makes it impossible to do a bipartisan deal. >> okay. $800 about, gregg, you tell me is that a serious concession when our nabs debt is $16 trillion? is that a serious negotiation. >> obama said i won. you're not getting squat. you're getting a piece of coal in your stocking. i won. you don't get jack. democrats need to talk about taxes. they pushed agenda. i would like to see us being very, very aggressive on cuts because washington is fat, it is terrible, it is wasteful we have to change that for the new year. that is a great new year's resolution. >> there are lots of cuts if we go off the fiscal cliff. lack of unity and vision there --. gregg: talking about this in the last hour, mark. but i want to put it to you. the president campaigned. he said i want to raise rates on everybody who make
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over 250. and you do the math and it's been done by all kinds of economists and cbo. >> many people voted for that. gregg: comes to $800 billion mark. so suddenly the president's reelected and immediately doubles it, now i want 1.6 trillion. >> psych, sorry. we'll change rules because i won. crossing my fingers behind my back. changed the rules. gregg: go ahead, mark. how do you figure that the president, you know, said i want 800 billion. now all of sudden i want twice that much. >> the president said that refering to income taxes the now that we're facing sort of debt problem that we're facing, the president is getting serious about other types of revenue, including loopholes. loopholes many wealthy americans benefit from and middle class americans don't have advantage of benefiting from. a lot of the reason why americans who are making over a million dollars are paying 13%, 17% in taxes when middle class americans are paying a lot higher tax rates.
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effective tax rates. president is getting serious about closing loopholes and increasing --. gregg: dee dee, has john boehner lost control of his own party? is his speakership in serious trouble here? >> i have to tell you. i think we need more leadership and more people to the table. actually i would like to see new leadership. i would like to see kevin mccarthy and cathy morris rogers. gregg: get rid of boehner. >> as a republican i would like to see new leadership because we did try to remove the president. gregg: same words. get rid of boehner, why aren't you saying the words, get rid of boehner. >> for you, i will say i think we need new leadership. i would love to see speaker mccarthy. gregg: i don't know why you don't say the words. >> merry christmas. gregg: good to see you both. merry christmas. >> merry christmas. heather: one of the the holiest days of the christian calendar. new report reveals the third largest religious group in the world one which there is no religion at all. stay with us.
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gregg: came face-to-face with a killer. now the sole survivor of the oregon mall shooting is out of the hospital, back with her family and telling a powerful story about what happened on the day the shots rang out at the clack mass town center. our portland affiliate kttv has the story. >> being home with family.
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>> reporter: surrounded by the arms of her family and on the mend from surviving the unthinkable, christina relives the moment she came face-to-face with a killer. >> i only saw him for an instant, only to see that he was wearing black, a mask and carrying a gun. i didn't even realize it was a real gun. i thought it was maybe a prank. >> reporter: it wasn't until the first shots rang out that christina realized not only was this gun real, but jacob roberts was heading in her direction. as bullets whized past her, she hid beside a pillar next to her best friend and when she looked down she realized she was shot in the chest. >> i felt a huge amount of pressure and pain but honestly it feels, you can't describe what it feels like. >> reporter: christina was rushed to the hospital where doctors removed bullet fragments from her collapsed
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lung and a bruised liver. her father said it was nothing more short of a miracle that she is even here. >> biggest christmas present for us she is alive. otherwise what i'm not sure it is going to be. >> reporter: the courageous teen who endured so much struggles with many questions about that day, including why two other innocent people died. >> it is hard to think that, why should they have to be the ones weren't able to run away? they were just passing by, like regular, all other people shouldn't be they were ones that didn't get away. >> reporter: when asked about the man who r she harbors no hate. instead to remind others just how precious life is. >> he might have had a heart life. i don't know what his life was like or his reasons for doing what he did. so i can't exactly blame
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him. it only shows how prepared we have to be and how we have to cherish every moment because he never know when it can be the last. gregg: that is caitlin boldock of our portland affiliate. kttv. reporting. heather: well, brand new study on faith to share with you this christmas eve and it has some very interesting findings. chief among them, that, people with no religious affiliation are now the third largest group in the world coming in just after christians, and muslims. pastor robert jeffers, he is the pastor of the first baptist church in dallas. he is also a nationally syndicated radio talk show host. and rabbi siria, author of pushback, reclaiming our spirits and president of caucus for america. thank you for joining us. >> thank you for having us. heather: i would ask you
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both, does that study surprise you, people with no religious affiliation are ranked third in the world? rabbi, i will begin with you. >> it is surprising and very worrisome, is specially people those that are secular, they have adopted a new religion. left liberalism provides them outlook and attitude towards life. it is not necessarily sourced in our judeo-christian eat those and problematic not forepeople in the individuals and but the nation. a nation needs identity and morality. our identity always came from the old and new testament. judeo-christian ethos and morallyty is best based on gods word because morality slides into relativism. heather: pass star, i see that you agree. >> i would agree with the rabbi. i have a little bit different take from what we're experiencing in our own church, first baptist
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church in dallas. people seem to be reluctant to put a religious label on themselves. our church is growing tremendously right now. we're getting ready to open $130 million campus on five blocks of downtown dallas and the reason we're growing is, we're having people from all different religious backgrounds, catholic, methodist, episcopalians because coming to our church because we don't emphasize being a baptist. we don't talk about that. we talk about a follower of christ. we don't teach a manmade creed. we teach the bible. what i'm finding people are hungry not for religion. they're hungry for a relationship with god. i believe any church or synagogue that offers that is going to attract people. heather: rabbi, i would ask you, you know, talking about the future of religion in our daily lives, we look at the news headlines that we've experienced, the mass shooting at sandy hook, the shooting happening today in new york with the firefighters, what do you think about the future of religion? one of these studies talked
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about the median age, specifically, i can pull out judaism, which has 14 million adherents. .2% of the entire world. has highest median age of 36. what do you think are the growth aspects there? >> in order for it to grow we have to assert the importance of religion. there is more to life than simply being a good person and religion offers you is a relationship with god and an understanding of what is right and what is wrong. a life without god is a diminished life in my opinion. but i think that we need to assert this more and we've been remiss. we just relied a lot on feel-goodism, as if that itself is enough for being a good person. heather: so feel goodism, should be replaced with what? >> i think historical traditional religion which has a message, what is right, what is wrong. what truly is our way to a relationship with god. and that of course will make the world better but it is very important for the
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nation. the nation was founded on a judeo-christian ethos which is specific. it has more to do than just simply feel goodism. heather: pastor jeffers, we have only 30 seconds left. so a final word from you. >> well i would say as a final word, this tragedy in connecticut is proof of, i believe, what happens when we don't have that foundation that the rabbi talked about. i was debating the leader of the american atheist association and i said, you know the fact that evil occurs and you care about it proves the existence of god because why is it we call evil evil? there is no evolutionary explanation for that. it is because we have been created in the i will imagine of a god who absolutely hates evil and i believe both the rabbi and i have the same message in this sense and that is we believe a relationship with god is what gives fullness, meaning morality to life. heather: and to this holiday season. thank you both for joining us. we appreciate the message today. thank you. >> thank you. gregg: opening gifts this
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holiday season, you may notice more made in america tags than ever before. we're going to tell you why that is coming up. heather: plus, they call her the gingerbread lady and she is baking up a storm. we will show you this utah woman's amazing creations up next. >> most people say, you think you have american country? yes i do. i don't need money. i don't need publicity. i don't need nothing. just to see the faces, you know the love you can give to others. hey, look! a shooting star! make a wish! i wish we could lie here forever. i wish this test drive was over, so we could head back to the dealership. [ male announcer ] it's practically yours. test drive! but we still need your signature. volkswagen sign then drive is back.
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heather: welcome back. take a look at this. a utah woman is baking up impressive edible creations. she spends00 of hours, -- hundreds of hours, thousands of dollars a year building gingerbread villages. ones that get most attention, hogwart's castle, you know where that is from, gregg? gregg: yeah,. >>. heather: a miniature version of the hospital in her area. gregg: that is very cool. let's talk about the holiday shopping season delivering a special gift for american industry. shoppers going out of their way it seems to choose items made in the usa.
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william la jeunesse reporting live from los angeles. hi, william. >> reporter: hey, gregg. because there is no buy america chain store americans have to work a little harder. so 80% of us say we would pay more for an american product but there isn't always the availability or visibility of stores. products are sourced or manufactured or assembled in the u.s. some web sites do. one that doubled sales last year is made in the uusa forever.com. it provides american made jeans, work clothing, guardening and electronics and garden tools. the founder worked in asia for a decade and saw the chinese suck american jobs offshore, while american-made may mean higher price, quality is better and the purchase will pay dividends for generations to come. >> it touch as lot of people. the farmer that grows the cotton. the persons that to take that to the mill. people working at the mill and so on and so on and all the people that support them. the economic multiplier effect is at least 1.7 for
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every dollar that we spend in our own nation to value economically in our own country. >> reporter: right now 98% of the clothing purchased in america is made abroad. no surprise when low-skilled wages in china are like 300 bucks a month versus 2,000 a month here. as a consequence, just 8% of the american workers are in manufacturing, compared to 28% in 1960. wages in china are going up. 30% say experts in the next few years, eliminating some of asia's competitive advantage in sectors like furniture, fabricated metals, furniture and electronics. another issue is perception. after detroit made bad cars in the '70s, american products got a bad rap. that is changing. american products are now revered for quality and durability. as our brand improves, sales should follow. gregg: i remember some of those bad cars. the chevy vega. remember that? oh my lord. >> or the k-car. gregg: there you go.
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who can forget that one. william la jeunesse. merry christmas. >> reporter: the same. gregg: thanks. heather: the eyes of millions of americans are on one man this hour and it is not gregg jarrett. sorry, gregg. gregg: there he is. heather: look at that. we know that old saint nick has already hit the road. an update on santa's famous flight. and how you and your family can track his every move across the globe. that is a good-looking st. nick. gregg: i have a sleeping outfit just like that. ♪ .
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>>gregg: i knew what happened he was look, out of my backyard at the beginning of april, and i could not ask for anything more. the best christmas present, ever. >>gregg: what a beautiful dog. the family could not afford to pay for the trip back home so blue mountain rescue and the animal shelter and petco made the reunion a reality. how do you you figure he got from phoenix to oregon? we need a dog whisperer. >> we have breaking news, though, for you on fox. all the kids at home at the north pole report that santa and the sleigh have hit the road, or the skies. the video from finland showing father christmas pitching up the reindeer before visiting every girl and boy tonight naughty or nice. >>

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